December 19, 2014

How to Restart a Blog When You’ve Been on Hiatus for Three Years

Posted by: of Stephan on 05/14/13

I left my blog dormant for a few years, but I’m finally back in the saddle! I drafted up a post entitled “How to Restart a Blog When You’ve Been on Hiatus for Three Years” because it seemed fitting. Here are my main points to get you started:

1. Jump in and write something. No apologies. Or a lengthy explanation or justification for being off the grid.

2. Get some tools or processes in place that will make it as painless as possible to post. Like Dragon – which incidentally is available as an iPhone/iPad app.

3. Hire a virtual assistant if that will help you. (More on using VA’s in a future post).

4. Roll out a site redesign at the same time to let everybody know you’re reengaged and committed.

5. Don’t try to get all your readers all caught up on your life all in one post. You’ve got plenty of fodder for many blog posts – so save it for later.

6. Finally, silence the perfectionist in you. I have this bad habit of pouring over my blog posts – my articles even more so – trying to make them perfect. I put a dozen hours or more into articles on search engine land. That’s crazy. That’s not good use of your time. Much better to freeze all those great ideas and insights stuck in your head – share them with the world. It’s okay if the sentence structure isn’t always on the mark. It’s a blog post for Pete’s sake.

JupiterResearch – Soon To Be A Corporate Blog World

Posted by: of Diva Marketing Blog on 06/28/06

Recently JupiterResearch dropped a media release that has the social media scene buzzing. And well it should for the prestigious JupiterResearch’s study revealed that “… 35 percent of large companies plan to institute corporate Weblogs this year. Combined with the existing deployed base of 34 percent, nearly 70 percent of all site operators will have implemented corporate blogs by the end of 2006.”

That’s significant. Actually, I found that to be a little too signifcant.

According the Fortune 500 Business Blogging Wiki (written by Chris Andersen of Wired and Ross Mayfield of Socialtext) Wiki to as of April 18, 2006 29 (5.8%) of Fortune 500 companies had a blog. If JupiterResearch’s analysis is correct and “nearly 70% of all site operators will have implemented corporate blogs by the end of 2006″ a lot of Fortune 500s (not to mention other large companies) are are going to be pretty busy building blogs during the next six month.

Even though I admit to a drink of that kool-aid every now and again, this sounded strange. I shot an email off to Peter Arnold Associates (PR agency) explaining that I was working in the social media space, was a blogger and wanted to post their client’s findings. I explained I found the analysis odd and asked for clarification on the methodolgy, how JupiterResearch defined “corporations” and “large companies” and how they came to their conclusions.

I received two lovely responses. The first: “Let me check in with someone on the research team at JupiterResearch to find answers to your questions. I’ll be back in touch as soon as I hear.”

The second: “Information about JupiterResearch reports are available to accredited members of the press for free and clients.

After looking at your blog link JupiterResearch has decided not to fulfill your request for more information since the blog* is closely tied with your company that serves as a consultancy. I’m sorry I didn’t tell you this earlier, I didn’t realize that your company and blog were so closely affiliated.

If you’d like more information about becoming a client or purchasing a report, please let me know.”

Bloggers have gotten called on the carpet for jumping the gun and posting without fact checking. While we’re not journalists, the majority of business bloggers do feel an obligation to their readers to present accurate information.

BBC readers, I tried to find out the story behind the numbers for you before I posted that I thought these findings were .. shall we say out of the ball park optimistic. Based on the information presented in their media release, I caution you to look at JupiterResearch’s conclusions with with a few grains of salt.

If anyone has read the report and can explain how “nearly 70 percent of all site operators will have implemented corporate blogs by the end of 2006″ please drop a comment. I sure would like to know.

Business Blog Consulting Contributors in MarketingSherpa Top Blog Awards

Posted by: of Thinking Home Business on 06/28/06

Good news on the blog awards front.

Blogs produced by John Jantsch and Andy Wibbels, contributors to Business Blog Consulting, have made it into MarketingSherpa’s Top 10 Blogs and Best Podcast for 2006.

MarketingSherpa, Inc. is a research firm publishing case studies, benchmark data, and how-to information for marketing, advertising, and public relations professionals. The Blog and Podcast Awards listing is based on a readers’ choice poll, following an email broadcast by MarketingSherpa to 237,000 readers, described as primarily marketing professionals in corporate America.

Voters were asked to rate blogs on the basis of personality, usefulness, design & readability, and the question ‘would you revisit?’ For each of these the quality choices were: excellent, not bad, blah.

The Best Blog on Small Business Marketing award went to John Jantsch’s Duct Tape Marketing weblog, started in August 2003. This is the third year in a row that this award has gone to John’s blog. I’m not surprised.

I’ve always been amazed at the amount and frequency of quality information and observation by John on Duct Tape Marketing.

And I see that now, as posted here last week, John has upped the ante, transforming his one man blog into a blog channel, with twenty two contributors on various aspects of small business marketing. Now that’s leverage! And judging by a bit of a tour I’ve just done of sites within the channel, this is already a great resource for small business, with articles on all sorts of topics, from managing people, to PR, to how small businesses can sell to big businesses – you name it, I’m fairly sure it’s there.

Andy Wibbels, the ‘Original Blogging Evangelist’ and from my personal experience a great blogging coach and mentor, took out the award Best Blog on Marketing to a Specific Consumer Demographic for his Andy Wibbels site. The citation says: Andy’s blog tells marketers and blog-writers how to attract the blog-reading public. Andy is also author of best-selling ‘Blogwild! A Guide for Small Business Blogging’ and was an award winner in last year’s MarketingSherpa awards as well.

Congratulations John and Andy!

Debbie Weil has also posted about the MarketingSherpa awards on her BlogWrite for CEOs -  highlighting a few of her favorites among the winners and listing a few more blogs she recommends.

 

 

When Your Customers Blog…

The Web and the blogosphere can be incredible tools to connect with customers and prospects. Unfortunately, if you’re not doing a good job your customers can use these same tools to let the world know.

AOL found this out recently when one of their customers tried to cancel his account. Vincent Ferrari had heard horrible stories about AOL’s “customer support” so he decided to record his conversation.

After 15 minutes he finally got through to a human being. The call resulted in something that’s a cross between Dante’s 9th ring of hell and Orwell’s 1984. The king from Monty Python’s Holy Grail had an easier time explaining to the palace guards to keep his son locked in his room than Ferrari had explaining that he just wanted to cancel the account. “I don’t know how I can make this any clearer, just cancel my account,” he says time and again.

Ferrari put the recording on his blog, but was overwhelmed by the social bookmarking traffic. You can now listen to the whole painful affair at Putfile.com. When something’s this painful or funny, it’s very likely to go viral.

That virus got Ferrari on a number of talk shows and got him an official apology from AOL.

The lesson here: treat your customers with respect, because they just might be blogging.

By the way, if you think Ferrari is just a crank about customer service, read this recent post on his experience with Audible.

New Business Blog Directory

A nascent blog directory, iBlogBusiness, has recently launched to serve people looking specifically for business blogs.

The concept isn’t revolutionary, but it could become a good resource for those looking for other business blogs.
Since adding your own blog is free, it’s probably worth the two minutes it takes to submit your URL to iBlogBusiness.

Getting quality incomings is essential to good search engine ranking; since iBlogBusiness hasn’t been around long enough to provide good PageRank, you should also submit to the blog directories listed in Robin Good’s Best Blog Directory and RSS Submission Sites page.

Small Business Blog Network Grows

Posted by: of Duct Tape Marketing Blog on 06/23/06

Today the Duct Tape Marketing Blog Channel added 14 new blogs on specific small business topics bringing the total to 22. The collective brainpower coming from this blog network will make it the place to go for small business information.

Some of the blogs on the channel are authored by well known small business folks, some are written by people you may not be familiar with, but have much to say.

Blog Awards ala Marketing Sherpa

Posted by: of Online Marketing Blog on 06/22/06

Marketing Sherpa is at it again with their third annual blog awards and this year they’ve added more categories including one for podcasting. Here are this year’s categories:

B-to-B marketing, Search marketing, Affiliate marketing, Email marketing, PR, Advertising, Marketing to a specific, consumer demographic (ie. women, kids), Blogging or podcasting as a marketing tactic, Viral, word of mouth, buzz, social marketing, Small business marketing, Non-English language blogs on marketing, General (multiple topic) marketing, Other specific niche topic related to marketing.Nominations were taken last week and this week there is voting until this Friday. Voting criteria include: Personality, Usefulness & content value, Usability & design and Would you revisit?. For some reason, and I’m not sure why, there are quite a few well known blogs that were not included.

Of course several Business Blog Consulting contributors have been nominated including:

You can vote for all or some of the blogs by rating them. Cast your vote today.

Blogging for the Good of Mankind

You can do search marketing for the good of mankind, so why not blogging for the good of mankind? There are issues-focused blogs like the environmental blog TreeHugger. Now there’s a network of blogs for good, founded by Paul Chaney of Radiant Marketing Group. Way to go, Paul! It’s a brilliant idea; I hope it really turns into something big. Doug Kaye (founder of IT Conversations) is another blogger/podcaster with a social conscience… he’s started the podcast channel Social Innovation Conversations.

I too am inspired to blog for the benefit of mankind and the planet. The way I have decided to make a difference is by starting a blog to give visibility to ideas that I and other bloggers have that will make the world a better place in some way. It could be an idea to improve the environment, to help out a charity, to advance human rights, etc. I’ve just launched this blog, which I am calling Changes for Good. I would love to get some of you bloggers as contributors. Please contact me if you are interested. And of course, any and all links would be greatly appreciated. :-)

Yo Ho Ho and a Blogger with Rum

Posted by: of One By One Media on 06/14/06

Bacardi Canada has joined the blogosphere, but in a somewhat unorthodox manner. They have hired Dave, in a move that is similar to other campaigns such as the Captain Morgan Blog (now visiting Davy Jones’ locker). I have heard the term coined as character bloggers by my partner and colleague Tris Hussey in describing this type of blogger. Dave is not a representative of the company, in fact they are apparently paying him partially in product to be their blogger.

Rick Bruner, our fearless leader here at BBC states:

“If you think of blogs outside of the marketing context — just your ordinary person writing a journal online — they tend to be nothing more than honest and transparent, individual and personal.

“And when companies try to fake that for marketing purposes and try to, in a sense, hoodwink readers into thinking it’s something it’s not, in many cases bloggers tend to react very badly.

In fact a contributor here Dave Taylor boils it down to:

“I think it’s a little naïve to think that … every blog has to be real and genuine from a real person that you could meet on the street or go have lunch with,” notes Taylor.

“A blog is just a tool. There’s nothing special about it. There’s nothing magic. It doesn’t re- invent corporations. It doesn’t fundamentally change anything.

“It’s up to people and up to companies to come up with interesting and creative ways to utilize the tool.”

Steve Rubel of Micropersuasion and Senior VP at Edelman says the right way to use the tool as referred to by Taylor is to have some executive in the company be the blogger:

“Corporate blogs, whether they come from the executives or employees or customers, are tremendous.”

This wouldn’t be the first time I disagreed with Steve, but I think that hiring a blogger when you don’t have the ability is a smart move. Some companies don’t have the manpower or someone in the organization that is equipped to handle the duties of a blogger. Blogger are at the moment a rare breed. They are a mixture of writer, public relation specialist, advertiser and IT person. Not every company has this in their arsenal of employees.

I agree completely with Rick’s thoughts:

“If you’re doing something trying to be funny, then be really funny, not just kind of mild funny that the marketing department and the legal department and the HR department are going to sign off on as funny,” he says. “That’s not funny.”

Give this blogger a little time to perform, but as a character blogger goes, I find him to be amateurish towards his approach and the quality of the conversation lacking. Perhaps when he is in a drunken stupor from the client’s product or it is wages, he might actually submit something that is his own and not just another blog that is trying to act like a myspace.com knock off.

Tags: , , , ,

Dr. Jakob Nielson nags yet again about Web usability

Maybe I’m tilting at windmills with this particular discussion, but when usability guru Jakob Nielsen comes out with his list of Eight Problems That Remain, an excerpt of his newly published book Prioritizing Web Usability I can’t help but yawn and marvel at how he’s so out of touch with the reality of the modern Web and blogosphere.

For example, he believes that sites that don’t have visited links a different color to unvisited links are committing a critical, three skull-and-crossbone error, yet I can’t think of a site I visit with any frequency that doesn’t violate this “guideline”.

I admit that some of what he highlights remains a genuine problem with Web usability and in particular with blog usability, but so much of his criticism seems to be basically irrelevant and I have to wonder what sites he visits on a daily basis. They’re undoubtedly different to my own bookmark list…

I dig into his eight problems in considerable detail on my own blog, actually, so please check out my much longer commentary: Jakob Nielsen on Web Usability

Brian Carroll Shows Us Book Launch 2.0 With the Release of “Lead Generation for the Complex Sale”

Posted by: of BlogWrite for CEOs on 06/13/06
brian_carroll_book.jpg

Way to go, Brian! It’s exciting when a fellow author hits publication day and can announce the official release of his book: Lead Generation for the Complex Sale (McGraw-Hill, ISBN 0071458972, $24.95).


2.0: the new way to publicize your book release

Just got an email from Brian with a link to today’s press release about the launch. (He uses PRWeb which I’ve also used and recommend highly. Inexpensive and reliable; your release gets picked up by Google and other news sources.)

Cleverly, he’s also released a matching podcast through PRWeb Podcast. [Note: Brian's PRWeb podcast is 7:41 mins and links directly to an MP3 file that is 7.1 MB. Wish there were an interim download page for this.]

Notice that Brian also has a big-name publisher, McGraw-Hill. These days, that isn’t enough. You’ve got to market your book as imaginatively and aggressively as if you were self-published. In fact, proving that you can do that is one key piece in getting a book deal.

About the book

Brian sent me a preview copy. It’s a handsome hardcover that packs in everything you could possibly want to know about creating and sustaining a lead generation program. If you’re in big-time sales with long lead times — or managing anyone who is — you gotta have Brian’s book on your desk. Order on Amazon.

More about the book and other ways to order.

TypePad Features Another BBC Blog – Flyte

Posted by: of Diva Marketing Blog on 06/8/06

TypePad must really like the blogger line-up at Business Blog Consulting. We hit the jackpot this week. Rich Brook’s Flyte is the featured blog today.

Congrats! Rich. By the way, if you miss the write-up on the home page (6/8), catch it on the archives.

Diva Marketing Blog – TypePad’s Featured Blog of the Day

A quick (unsolicited) kudo to our own Toby Bloomberg; her Diva Marketing Blog is TypePad’s Featured Blog of the Day today (6/5/08.)

Great job, Toby!

Boing Boing Attacks Law Firm over Copyright Protection Efforts

Maybe it’s just that I’m a huge fan of the World Cup and have been known in the past to shut down my business during the last few games of what is easily the most popular sporting event in the world, but I am appalled by the sophomoric response of the Boing Boing team to a letter from law firm representing the online rights to the games.

Here, read my thoughts on this, and, hopefully, add your own two cents about this situation:

Boing Boing attacks FIFA World Cup copyright protection efforts

Honestly, in many ways I see this as yet another blogger assault on business itself and another reason why companies continue to ignore or fear the blogosphere as a communications channel.

But, please, go read what I’ve written and decide for yourself.

Blogger gang sign is now a T-shirt

You may recall several weeks back my post about the blogger hand signal. I’ve since discovered that this “gang sign” has been made into a T-shirt and is available for purchase from Threadless.

If you’re not familiar with Threadless, it’s developed a sort of cult following. The T-shirt designs are submitted by their site visitors. They have some pretty wacky designs, like this one and this one.

 

Syndicate:

RSS RSS Feed



Posts via e-mail

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Recent Posts:

Archives:

Buzz Cloud:

Recent Readers:

Tag Cloud:

Categories:

types of depression migraine symptoms building muscle for women how to get rid of back acne fast how to beat depression treatment for depression painkiller addiction signs workouts for women